BioServe Culture Apparatus (BCA) - 07.15.14
ISS Science for Everyone
Science Objectives for Everyone The BioServe Culture Apparatus (BCA) was developed for biological studies, including suspension cell culture and tissue engineering studies. The BCA allows for passive gas exchange in a sterile environment and can provide growth media, sampling, and fixation of cultures. In addition, the BCA, which is contained inside the Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGBA), allows for thermally controlled or software controlled time-course sampling.
Science Results for Everyone
University of Colorado at Boulder, BioServe Space Technologies, Boulder, CO, United States
Sponsoring Space Agency
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD)
ISS Expedition Duration
Previous ISS Missions
The BioServe Culture Apparatus was previously used in investigations performed on STS-106.
- The BioServe Culture Apparatus (BCA) meets the needs of biological studies, including cell culture and tissue engineering studies, and requires minimal crew interaction. The base of the BCA is thermally controlled via the Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGBA). The BCA contains media, a fixative syringe, an automated vacutainer for sampling, and gas exchange culture bags.
- Eight BCAs can fit into the CGBA, allowing several different experiments to be set up or conducted at one time. Each experiment can be conducted separately via time course or thermal control for activation and termination.
The BCA allows passive gas exchange within a sterile environment provided by containment in Teflon® or silicone culture bags. Four 30-ml culture bags provide a total culture volume of 120-ml. Two 50-ml syringes are used for incremental injections of media or fixative, and four 5-ml vaccutainers are provided for independent culture sampling with or without fixative. The CGBA can support eight BCA time-course experiments with independent temperature control between -10 and 37 °C. The Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGBA) Isothermal Containment Module (ICM) v.4 and 5 provides highly accurate temperature control between -10 and 37 °C. Eight areas that allow temperature to be individually controlled are available inside the CGBA when it is loaded with the BioServe Culture Apparatus (BCA) hardware. The CGBA ICM v.4 and 5 are fully equipped with data, video, and telemetry electronics to allow remote operation, and they can be equipped with a number of bioprocessing inserts, including the BCA.
- The BioServe Culture Apparatus (BCA) is flown inside the Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGBA) unit; v.4 and 5 are currently operating onboard the International Space Station (ISS).
- The BCAs can be automatically activated once on orbit. Automated activation, sampling, and termination as well as near-real-time experiment monitoring can be provided.
Ground Based Results Publications
- BioServe Space Technologies
- NIH BioMed-ISS Meeting Video Presentation, 2009?BCA
- NIH BioMed-ISS Meeting, 2009?BCA
The BCA supports cell cultures contained in silicone or Teflon® bags to provide passive gas exchange. The hardware enables experiments to be activated, sampled, and fixed while in orbit. Image courtesy of BioServe Space Technologies, University of Colorado - Boulder, Boulder, CO.
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